Pregnancy Problems: Low Back Pain
At E and E, we're very passionate about bringing you valuable and FREE information. We want to help as many mamas-to-be as possible along their journey.
That is why we're going to keep the blog posts like this coming!
Today, we're also sending out an email to our email list that includes a PDF freebie! It is 7 EXERCISES TO HELP EASE YOUR PREGNANCY LOWER BACK PAIN. If you want to get this freebie you can sign up for our email list here.
Pregnancy Low Back Pain
Why It Happens
Low back pain during pregnancy is common, but doesn't have to be normal. It typically occurs during the second half of pregnancy and gets worse as the pregnancy progresses. If you are experiencing it, you are not alone! Two thirds of mamas experience back pain. The main two reasons are the postural and hormonal changes that your body goes through to grow a baby.
During pregnancy the abdominal muscles are s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d. This leaves women much more vulnerable to injury because of the lack of stability in their core. The great news: there are a lot of things we can do to prevent and reverse this. The exercises in the guide are strategically chosen to prevent this lower back pain! We will let you in on a little secret to: the pain may not be coming from the lower back. Hip weakness and upper back tightness are large contributors. Due to the weight of the baby, women often increase their base of support by widening their stance by rotating their legs outward. This shortens muscles in the hip and locks out the lower back. When the muscles are shortened in the hip, they lose some of their power. The lower back gets stuck in a stagnant position like the stagnant water of a swamp. The way to bring clean water in is to MOVE those joints. Our bodies love movement and movement produces synovial fluid that keeps our joints happy. Additionally, upper back tightness puts more strain on the lower back because it increases the curvature of the spine. This leaves our spines less able to absorb strain on the joints.
Hormonal changes that are prepping your body for labor and delivery are working against you at times while that sweet babe grows. But, you will be thanking them later! Laxin is a hormone that loosens your joints and relaxes your ligaments all over the body including your pelvis and lower back. This makes you more unstable and causes pain with walking, standing, sitting, rolling over in bed, getting in and out of chairs and lifting things. We cannot change this, but we can protect our bodies while it happens by increasing low and mid back flexibility and strengthening your hips and lower back.
Strength is SO important and the pain won’t get better without it!
The Expecting and Empowered guide is WRITTEN (by a physical therapist and personal trainer) to help you build the strength and flexibility you need to avoid and/or lessen your pregnancy lower back pain. You can buy your guide here.
If you want the back pain freebie, sign up to be on our list above! If you are an #expectingandempoweredmama and are doing the guide you can ADD the exercises from the Back Pain PDF into your daily routine. PLUS you should continue to do your prescribed guide exercises each week!
Changes in Habit Can Help!
Avoid activities and positions that strain the joints of the pelvis and lower back such as crossing legs, climbing stairs, standing with weight on one leg, stair stepper machines, and sitting in an asymmetrical position.
When is lower back pain during pregnancy serious?
If your back pain lasts more than two weeks, it's time to contact your healthcare provider. Call your provider immediately if:
- Your back pain is severe, gets progressively worse, or is caused by trauma.
- Your back pain is accompanied by a fever, vaginal bleeding, or a burning sensation when you pee.
- You've lost feeling in one or both legs, or you suddenly feel uncoordinated or weak.
- You lose sensation in your buttocks, groin, genital area, or your bladder or anus. This could make it hard to pee or have a bowel movement, or, alternatively, cause incontinence.
- You have lower back pain in the late second or third trimester. This can be a sign of premature labor especially if you didn't have back pain before that.
- You have pain in your lower back or in your side just under your ribs, on one or both sides. This can be a sign of a kidney infection, especially if you have a fever, nausea, or blood in your urine.
We hope this helps and want to have YOUR back during pregnancy.
-Amy and Krystle